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UK – Labour calls for better implementation of temporary agency worker directive

13 September 2013

The Labour Party is calling for agency workers to be paid the same wage as their colleagues employed on permanent contracts, according to the Gloucestershire-based Stroud News and Journal. Former MP David Drew, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for the next general election in 2015, believes the Government must do more to guarantee agency workers get equal pay.

He said: "The Temporary Agency Workers Directive was introduced in the UK in 2011 to give equal treatment to agency workers but evidence has emerged that some agency workers are receiving up to £135 per week less than their permanent staff colleagues.”

Trade Union Congress (TUC) has gathered evidence from workplaces where agency staff are paid up to £135 per week less than their permanent counterparts.

"This cannot be right or fair for families struggling with increasing living costs. It is time the Government implemented this legislation across all kinds of work, including agency work," he added.

His concerns were echoed by Labour district councillor Chris Brine who said: "These workers often have no job security, low pay and poor career progression which makes it difficult to budget from month to month."

Councillor Brine, added: "People need protection from these types of contracts with agencies and the Government needs to act to ensure that Victorian employment practices are eradicated from 21st Century Britain."

The Labour Party’s comments on the Temporary Agency Workers Directive come shortly after the TUC lodged a formal complaint with the European Commission against the UK government for failing to implement the directive properly.  

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